About the Government’s COVID-19 measures, 20 January

Published

Read more about the Government’s COVID-19 measures in the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs’ policy areas of public health, medical care, social care and social insurance. The date in the title indicates when the article was written.

Restrictions to remain for a further two weeks

At a press conference held 26 January 2022, the Government and the Public Health Agency of Sweden presented their renewed assessment of the current situation regarding the spread of infection, the pressure on the healthcare sector, and the impact on society. The rate of infection in Sweden is still very high and the number of confirmed COVID-19 infections continues to rise. The assessment is that the spread of infection has not yet reached its peak, but that the Omicron variant results in a milder form of illness than previous variants. This means that a lower proportion of those infected suffer from serious illness.
If the situation stabilises, most of the restrictions may be lifted on 9 February.

Extension of the scheme for compensation when a school or preschool closes

The Government has decided to extend the regulation on temporary parental allowance due to the COVID-19 disease to the end of March 2022. This means that one parent can receive temporary parental allowance if the parent needs to be absent from paid work in order to care for a child when, for example, a preschool or school is closed in certain situations associated with the COVID-19 disease. The extension also includes the scheme for a certain preventive temporary parental allowance for parents of certain children who have recently become seriously ill and who need to be protected from infection by COVID-19.

The COVID-19 Act and the Act on Temporary Infection Control Measures at Restaurants and Bars are extended up to and including 31 May 2022.

The Government has issued extensions of the COVID-19 Act and the Act on Temporary Infection Control Measures at Restaurants and Bars until 31 May 2022, after the Riksdag voted in favour of the Government's proposal for an extension. The Riksdag also gives notice to the Government to respond with a proposal to the effect that the laws shall apply only up to and including 31 March 2022.

The Government has decided on the participant limit for general gatherings, public events, trade fairs, and private gatherings in rented premises.

The Government has decided on tighter restrictions due to the increased spread of infection from COVID-19 and the strained situation in the healthcare sector as a result of the pandemic. As a result of the request by the Public Health Agency of Sweden, a participant limit of 500 people is now being introduced for general gatherings and public events, including trade fairs, held indoors. An option for sectioning is being introduced so that the participant limit will apply to each section. The participant limit will apply when vaccination certificates are used.

In addition, the participation limit for private gatherings held in rented premises is being lowered to 20 people. However, this does not apply if the premises are used for memorial services in connection with a funeral ceremony since the participant limit will remain at 50 people.

Extended support for companies, culture and sport

The Government has proposed further measures to the Riksdag aimed at reducing the spread of infection, safeguarding healthcare resources for testing and vaccination, and mitigating consequences for Swedish jobs and companies. Among other things, this includes the extension of support for companies, culture and sport, as well as the reintroduction of compensation for qualifying deductions.

Stricter infection control measures were introduced on 12 January 2022

Stricter infection control measures were introduced on 12 January 2022 due to the significant increase in community transmission at the same time as an increase in pressure on the healthcare sector. The overall assessment is that Sweden is in a situation where it is necessary to take certain additional infection control measures in the Government's action plan for introducing infection control measures.

Restaurants and bars and other activities with large crowds shall have the option to use vaccination certificates.

The Government has decided that restaurants and bars and activities where the risk of crowding and spread of infection is particularly high shall have the option to use vaccination certificates as an infection control measure. The use of vaccination certificates is intended to reduce the spread of infection as well as its consequences for society.

Several important vaccination initiatives decided on for 2022

The Government has decided on several important initiatives for the purpose of increasing vaccination coverage in Sweden. Among other things, the Government has tasked the Public Health Agency of Sweden to carry out a national theme week on vaccination against COVID-19 at the beginning of 2022. The county administrative boards are also being given an extended and clarified assignment to assist the regions in the vaccination programme, to implement vaccination communication initiatives and to participate in the national theme week. The goal is for vaccination coverage in the country to be as high and evenly distributed as possible.

The Government and SKR agree on continued and strengthened handling of the COVID-19 pandemic

The Government and the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions (SKR) have entered into two new agreements for continued effective vaccination efforts and continued large-scale testing and contact tracing. The state reimburses the regions for each vaccination and test carried out. In addition, the regions will receive almost an additional SEK 200 million to increase vaccination capacity, among other things.

Vaccinated in third countries may soon receive COVID vaccination certificates

The Government has decided that the Swedish eHealth Agency will be allowed to sign an agreement with the National Government Service Centre, which means that people with their place of legal or registered residence in Sweden but who have been vaccinated in a third country will have access to a vaccination certificate. The service is expected to be in place no later than 1 February 2022.

More infection control measures from 23 December 2021

More infection control measures were introduced on 23 December in accordance with Government's action plan for the introduction of infection control measures. The reason is the increased spread of infection from COVID-19 in society and the increased pressure on the healthcare sector.

Measures from and including 23 December 2021:

  • Indoor general gatherings and public events with more than 20 participants must only have seated audiences, regardless of whether vaccination certificates are used or not. Without vaccination certificates, group size is limited to a maximum of 8 people with a distance of 1 metre between groups. There is an exemption to this for religious gatherings.
  • Indoor general gatherings and public events with more than 500 participants require vaccination certificates and group size limited to a maximum of 8 people with a distance of 1 metre between groups. General gatherings and public events with 500 participants or more can therefore not be arranged without a vaccination certificate.
  • For restaurants and bars, the requirements are for seated serving and a distance of 1 metre between groups. This also applies to nightclubs.
  • For trade fairs and indoor shopping venues, the requirement is for at least 10 square metres per person.
  • For indoor culture and recreational activities, such as museums, art galleries and gyms, the requirement is for at least 10 square metres per person, with the exception of activities aimed at children and young people born in 2002 or later, for example training and competition.
  • Between 23 December 2021 and 16 January 2022, advice was introduced to culture, sport and recreation associations against organising or participating in camps, cups or other major indoor activities whose participants do not normally meet in other circumstances. Individual activities, matches and one-day competitions in leagues or equivalent can be carried out. The advice does not apply to professional sport.
  • General advice to work from home is being reintroduced.
  • Infection control measures are recommended for adult education in order to avoid crowding and large gatherings. The general rule is for education to be conducted on an in-person basis, but universities and higher education institutions may use distance learning as a tool to prevent crowding at teaching premises.
     

The requirement for a medical certificate to receive disease carrier allowance is being temporarily removed

Government has decided to temporarily remove the requirement for a medical certificate to receive disease carrier allowance from 27 December 2021. The decision is part of Government's work to introduce more infection control measures in order to limit the spread of infection in society.